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WASHINGTON—The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' (USCCB) Subcommittee on the Church in Latin America awarded $3.39 million in funding in the form of 206 grants to support the pastoral work of the Church in Latin America and the Caribbean, and $580,950 in three grants funding emergency disaster and recovery assistance to areas affected by the Mexican Earthquakes and Hurricanes Matthew (2016), Irma and Maria (2017). In addition, the Subcommittee approved a design-phase request of $150,000 for the eventual reconstruction of the national major seminary devastated by the 2010 earthquake in Haiti. The grants were approved at the Subcommittee's meeting on June 11 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
Projects that received funding for pastoral activities include the following:
Haiti and Uruguay: Support for several families to participate in the 9th World Meeting of Families in Dublin, Ireland, August 21-26, 2018.
Nicaragua and El Salvador: Support for several delegates from the National Commission of Youth Ministry to participate in World Youth Day in Panama City, Panama, January 22-27, 2019.
Mexico: Support for "The Year of Mexican Youth -- A Moment of Grace," a national event that will include a celebration at the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe with an anticipated 13,000 participants.
Brazil: Pastoral support for Venezuelan refugees. This project will help implement and develop a migrant ministry in the diocese of Roraima and provide pastoral support to the recent influx of Venezuelan migrants to the area. The project aims to welcome and orient vulnerable migrants upon arrival, assist with access to services, provide language instruction and job training, strengthen women's groups, support the migrants' faith lives, and form local pastoral leaders and parishes to assist with immigrant integration.
"Through the Collection for the Church in America, Catholics from the United States express their solidarity with the people of Latin America and the Caribbean. I thank them for their generosity and am humbled by the impact their support has on countless lives in the region, particularly for young people and those living in areas ravaged by recent natural disasters," said Bishop Eusebio Elizondo, auxiliary bishop of Seattle and chairman of the Subcommittee on the Church in Latin America.
Other areas of funding include lay leadership training, catechesis, seminarian and religious formation, environmental justice, prison ministry, and youth and family ministries. Grants are funded by the annual Collection for the Church in Latin America, taken in many dioceses across the U.S. on the fourth Sunday in January. The emergency and reconstruction grants are awarded from the special collections the USCCB calls for after a disaster.
The Subcommittee on the Church in Latin America oversees the collection and an annual grant program as part of the USCCB Committee on National Collections. It allocates revenue received from the Collection for the Church in Latin America as grants across Latin America and the Caribbean. More information about the Collection for the Church in Latin America and the many grants it funds, as well as resources to promote it across the country, can be found at www.usccb.org/latin-america.
Keywords: Latin America, youth, clergy, lay formation, Collection for the Church in Latin America, U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, catechesis, grants, Bishop Eusebio Elizondo
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